January 10, 2015

a small list of good things...

small list of good things | yourwishcake.com
First of all, I have to say thank you (times a million!) to everyone who has taken the time to congratulate me on our grand announcement this month. I wish I could thank every single one of you in person, but alas! All of your well-wishes and shared excitement means so much. I may say it often, but it's true.

Here's a quick lil' weekend list for all of you:

+ I received some absolutely wonderful handmade Christmas gifts this year—including a gorgeous blanket, knitted by my mother-in-law, as well as the above infinity scarf, knitted by Jay's aunt. These beautiful gifts have inspired me to crochet my first full-size blanket this year, as well as either a hat or a scarf. Obviously, this is where Pinterest comes in…so, if you want to take a peek at projects that have been catching my creative eye, be sure to follow my crafty goodness board!

+ I just finished the best fiction book I've read in years: The Age of Miracles, by Karen Thompson Walker. I don't know what caught my eye about it at the library (I hadn't even heard of it before then!) but I'm so glad I went with my gut and checked it out. I hated when it was done and wished it had a sequel. So good! Read it. Read it now.

+ One of my favorite bloggers, Whoorl, recently posted a tutorial on how to give your hair messy waves with a flat iron, and I must pass it on. Years ago she posted a video on how to curl your hair with a flat iron and it kind of changed my life forever. I can get a head full of loose waves in less than ten minutes and it's a total game changer.

+ I always look forward to the weekly Stuff You Should Know podcast, and recently they had an episode on homeschooling. I didn't listen to it for a while, because I anticipated it would be a bit snarky or possibly reinforce negative stereotypes, but I was pleasantly surprised. Not only did they do thorough research, but they handled the subject objectively and offered a ton of facts that not even I was aware of. Even if you weren't homeschooled and aren't planning on homeschooling your own kiddos, it's an awesome listen—if only to shed some light on a lifestyle not many people know much about!

+ If any of you are still interested in the ePantry offer I posted about earlier this week, be sure to take advantage this weekend! The free shipping + $10 credit offer will be good through Sunday at 6PM (PST). If you sign up after that time, you will still receive a $10 credit on your account, but will pay shipping on your order. Any questions, ask away!

Further reading: Other small lists of good things.

Affiliate links included in this post; view my disclosure policy here.

January 9, 2015

the bump (12 weeks)...

First official bump photo! (How is this real life?) 12 weeks, 3 days. And to clarify: This is actually how my stomach looked after an El Torito happy hour 6 months ago, so this may not yet be a legit bump. Cheers to not sucking it in! #twelveweeks #babywi
As I begin to write this post, the whole thing still feels so surreal. Part of me feels like I was just writing about my pregnancy with Eisley. And, quite unexpectedly, I have struggled much more with worry and fear this time around—probably because this baby feels much more long-awaited, and all I keep wondering about is how this could possibly turn out the way I hope. Could I really be that lucky? Although there have been only four years between pregnancies, I've changed in so many ways. Perhaps it's odd, considering I've already gone though this once, but everything seems much more fragile and scary to me now.

Yesterday, I had my first official appointment with my OB and was pleasantly surprised to have another ultrasound. (I had my first around 9 weeks to confirm the due date.) Seeing that little baby with the strong heartbeat—especially having reached this point in my pregnancy—was such a weight lifted.

The baby is okay. I'm okay. Just breathe. It's time to relax and enjoy this now.

I'll probably be checking in once a month with these posts—something I wish I had been more diligent with while pregnant with Eisley! Here's a little check-in for the last few months… 

Symptoms: I'm truly convinced that I'm having a boy, because everything has been so different this time around. With Eisley, I my nausea lasted much longer and was much more intense, whereas this time I only had a few weeks where it was pretty dreadful. I continue to feel slightly under the weather, but the exhaustion far outweighs any morning sickness! I also have random cravings here and there (blueberry bagels, orange juice, spiral macaroni and cheese) and the one thing I haven't been able to even think about consuming for months is brewed coffee—something I used to always look forward to in the morning. As for other symptoms, there isn't too much to report, aside from having trouble sleeping.

Emotions: I've been much more emotional and grumpy this time around. I've had to continually apologize to my husband when I get extra snappy, because it's been a little out of control. (There are times I listen to him chew his dinner and contemplate throwing a fork at the wall out of pure rage.) Worry hasn't really been in the equation, unless I start thinking about how I will manage sleepless nights with a newborn, only to entertain a preschooler during the day. But somehow I know I'll figure it out. (Right?)

Body: With Eisley, I had absolutely no appetite for the first trimester (never gaining an increased appetite at all, actually!) and ended up losing almost 8 pounds by week 12. I haven't gained anything with this pregnancy, but the appetite is certainly there. I will even wake up with a growling stomach at 4AM, which is so bizarre. I'm still wearing regular clothes, but my jeans are being held together with a hair elastic, so…there's that.

Miscellany: There are so many things I'm looking forward to. I can't wait to have a huge belly, to feel the kicks, to go through labor (I know; I'm weird…and hoping for as great of an experience as I had with Eisley's birth), to breastfeed, to baby wear, to see Eisley become the amazing older sister I know she will be. I worried about four years being such a huge gap in ages, but the more I think about it, I realize how perfect God's timing has been. I love that I had so many years to spend exclusively with my first child, and I love that she's going to be old enough to help out and fully understand how important being a big sister is. There's no knowing how the adjustment will go, but I'm feeling pretty positive about the whole thing. We shall see! It's just so crazy to think that by this time next year I will be a mother of two.

Further reading: My first pregnancy, 13 weeks

January 8, 2015

Walmart Beauty Box (a review!)...

Walmart Beauty Box review | yourwishcake.com
Now, first things first: I'm not an avid Walmart shopper. Mostly because my heart (and wallet) belong to Target, but also because when I was 18 I saw a presentation on sweat shops at my community college and it still haunts my dreams. So, that is all to say: This post isn't exactly a fist-bump to all things Walmart, I just feel I've discovered the most inexpensive beauty box on the planet and had to share.

Phew! Now that that's off my chest…

I recently came across some information on this beauty box on Deal Seeking Mom, and—after researching reviews, finding almost all of them to be positive—decided that $5 (including shipping) for a box every season is actually a pretty good deal. Also, because I buy nearly all my beauty products from drugstores, I like the idea of getting samples for things that are actually within my budget.

When you sign up for a subscription, they mail you the most recent box, so I received the Winter 2014 selections. If you want more information on this beauty box, here you go! I don't receive anything if you sign up, and I wasn't compensated for this review—I just thought I'd share this deal with all of you, because it is so inexpensive. (And kind of fun to get a box o' goodies four times a year.)

Here's what I received:
Walmart Beauty Box review | yourwishcake.comWalmart Beauty Box review | yourwishcake.com
— Burt's Bees Facial Cleansing Towelettes (full size), retail price: $3
— Cover Girl Colorlicious Lipgloss in Juicy Fruit (full size), retail price: $7.99
— Dove body wash (sample size)
— Aveeno lotion (sample size)
— Sample packets for two different shampoo/conditioners and one fragrance

Judging by what others received in their boxes, I feel like I didn't get as much as some subscribers. (Perhaps this is because I received mine after the originals were sent out?) Still, I tried out the face wipes and they're fantastic, and the lipgloss is actually very pretty when I put it on. I love having body wash and lotion samples on hand for whenever we travel, so I'll add those to my stash! Based on other reviews I've read, these boxes typically include 1-2 full-size items inside, so I'm eager to see what is included in the spring box.

Have any of you received this box before? Are there any subscription boxes you've found are worth every penny?